Item Link: Access the Resource
Date of Publication: November
Year of Publication: 2014
Publication City: Hamilton, NY
Publisher: Colgate University
Author(s): William Meyer
Journal: Colgate Scene
Volume: XLVII Number 3
In the fall of 2004, I was assigned to teach a course on urban environmental issues in the coming semester. Although I’ve done extensive research into the human dimensions of environmental issues, I had never thought particularly about the role of cities.
In preparing the course, I supposed (and soon discovered) that the students would arrive expecting that cities and environmental quality are fundamentally at odds, and that the rationale for the course would lie squarely in the greater magnitude and severity of damage that cities can do. So, I thought that providing a few counterexamples might provide some interest.
I was surprised at how many I was able to find. That inspired me to look further. I began assessing what many people have written on the subject in the popular as well as the scientific literature, and found myself identifying mistakes they made in thinking about it. In fact, many widely held beliefs that sound not just plausible, but downright convincing, fail to stand up to close logical or empirical scrutiny.
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